Algernon Cecil Newton RA (British 1880-1968): 'A View of Godmersham Park Kent on a Cloudy Day', oil on canvas signed with monogram and dated '42, 74cm x 117cm in carved giltwood swept frame
Provenance: Godmersham Park, which features on the latest Bank of England ten pound note, was built in 1732 for Thomas May, landowner and MP, and was later inherited in 1794 by Edward Austen, brother of Jane Austen - the latter was a regular visitor between 1798 and 1813, and her novel Mansfield Park is said to be based on Godmersham. In the late 19th century, the house suffered from neglect and a lack of responsible owners, but was purchased by Mr and Mrs Robert Tritton in 1935 who, with the help of the architect Walter Sarel, carried out a thorough programme of reconstruction and renovation.
Robert Tritton Esq commissioned this painting in October 1942 for the sum of £262-10-0. In the same year he painted this picture, Newton was commissioned by the Marchioness of Normanby to paint Mulgrave Castle near Whitby. This local connection was possibly because, a year earlier, he moved to Beck Hole, living in the former Black Bull Inn (later renamed The Lord Nelson); he converted the upper floor into a studio, and whilst there painted an inn sign for the surviving The Birch Hall Inn which still hangs today. He lived there until 1948.
The picture was acquired from the above by the late John Archibald Dunning (1928-2019), celebrated New York Architect, and then by descent through the family. Dunning began practicing as an architect in Bristol after WWII, but after a first visit to the United States, he decided to emigrate and practice there for the rest of his life. He was intimately familiar with almost every building on Park and Fifth Avenues, where he completed projects for his clients or was engaged as the buildings' consulting architect. He wound up his practice in 2017. John was also an expert on English country houses and furniture. The contents of Godmersham Park were sold by Christie’s in June 1983, likely where Dunning purchased this lot.
Our thanks to the artist's great-grandson Sir Mark Jones for his assistance in cataloguing this lot, which is to be included in his forthcoming catalogue raisonné of Newton's work.
DDS - Artist's resale rights may apply to this lot
Excellent condition in quality carved frame (minor blemishes)
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Collect from The Vine Street Salerooms, Scarborough YO11 1XN.